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Surviving Galeras

Williams, Stanley

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ISBN 10: 0316855707 / ISBN 13: 9780316855709
Verlag: Little, Brown & Company, 2001
Gebraucht Hardcover
Verkäufer Eastleach Books (Newbury, BER, Vereinigtes Königreich)

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Beschreibung

Cloth, dj, F/VG. x+270pp, endpaper maps, 16pp b/w plates, index, dustjacket a little bumped at the spine, otherwise a near fine copy. Account of the eruption in 1993 of the Colombian volcano Galeras told by a vulcanologist who was working at the rim of the volcano when it exploded. He was severely injured & several collegues were killed. 600 grams. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 37528

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Bibliografische Details

Titel: Surviving Galeras

Verlag: Little, Brown & Company

Erscheinungsdatum: 2001

Einband: Hardcover

Zustand des Schutzumschlags: Dust Jacket Included

Auflage: 1st UK edition.

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Inhaltsangabe:

Through a harrowing first-person account of an eruption and its aftermath, SURVIVING GALERAS reveals the fascinating, high-risk realm of volcanology and explores the profound impact volcanoes have had on the earth's landscapes and civilizations.
In 1993, Stanley Williams, an eminent volcanologist, was standing on top of a Colombian volcano called Galeras when it erupted, killing six of his colleagues instantly. As Williams tried to escape the blast, he was pelted with white-hot projectiles traveling faster than bullets. Within seconds he was cut down, his skull fractured, his right leg almost severed, his backpack aflame. Williams lay helpless and near death on Galeras's flank until two brave women -- friends and fellow volcanologists -- mounted an astonishing rescue effort to carry him safely off the mountain.
The tale of how Williams survived Galeras is the framework for a groundbreaking book about volcanoes, their physical and cultural impact, and the tiny cadre of scientists who risk their own lives to gain knowledge that might one day save many others' lives.
Volcanoes unleash supremely powerful, unpredictable forces, and we have paid dearly for our understanding of their behavior. Even with ever more sensitive measuring tools and protective equipment, at least one volcanologist, on average, dies each year. Yet Williams and his fellow scientist-adventurers continue to unveil the enigmatic and miraculous workings of volcanoes and to piece together methods for predicting their actions. Volcanologists often put themselves in peril, not only because the discipline attracts risk-takers but because they know that volcanoes threaten as many as 500 million people worldwide. For Seattle, Tokyo, Mexico City, Naples -- and for volcanologists -- the clock is ticking.

Review:

On January 14, 1993, Stanley Williams led a party of fellow geologists up Galeras, a Colombian volcano that, though historically active, had been lying quiet long enough that they suspected it was due for an episode--and thus an opportunity for the volcanologists to practice their predicting skills. As they reached the lip of its great crater, Galeras obliged them with a vengeance: it erupted in a burst of fire and toxic gas, killing several members of the party and leaving Williams scorched and broken, "sprawled on my side, caked in ash and blood, wet from the rain, bones protruding from my burned clothes, my jaw hanging slackly."

Rescued by two colleagues, Marta Velasco and Patty Mothes, Williams faced several challenges in the years to come--not only healing his body and exorcising the ghosts of Galeras, but also contending with other colleagues' whispered charges that he should have known the mountain was about to blow. But death, Williams and collaborator Fen Montaigne (Reeling in Russia) write, comes with the territory. Whenever a volcano has erupted in recent years, it seems, a volcanologist is among its victims, for, Williams notes, "the best way to understand a volcano is still, in my opinion, to climb it," and to climb it in all of its moods. And those moods, Williams and Montaigne add, are not easy to forecast, even if earth scientists have developed ever more accurate ways to predict events such as earthquakes and tsunamis.

At once a study in mountains, the history of geology, and the will to endure, Surviving Galeras is often terrifying, and altogether memorable. --Gregory McNamee

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